Revolutionary War

Soldiers in the Revolutionary War
The Revolutionary War was between Great Britian and the colonies.  The colonies wanted to break away from Great Britian.  In this book you will find out why.  Keep in mind what you learned about the French and Indian War; Britian and the colonists worked together to defeat the French and the Indians in that war. 

Colonists protesting the taxes passed by Parliament.

The colonists had to follow British laws and had to do whatever the King of England and Parliament told them to do.  The colonists wanted to be able to control their own government.  They were very angry with Parliment because they thought that they should have the right to control their own government.  

After the French and Indian War Britian felt the colonists would have to help pay for the war.  Parliment began to tax the colonists.  


The Townshends Act was a tax on paint, glass, and tea.  

The Stamp Act was a tax on all printed matierals (newspapers, marriage licences, etc.)

This license plate is for Washington, D.C.

The reason the colonists were so upset about the tax is because of "taxation without representation."  They wanted to have colonists in Parliament so that they could have a say in what taxes they would pay, what laws would be passed, and how the government was going to be run. 


Parliament refused to give the colonists representatives in the government so the thirteen colonies decided that they would break away from Britain and start their own country, The United States of America.  

This picutre shows the authors of the Declaration of Independence.

Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence.  The document was sent to the King of England.  It said that that the colonists had the right to control their own government, not the king. 


The King of England did not like that the colonies were trying to break away from England.  The King declared war on the colonies to prevent them from becoming their own country.  This was the start of the Revolutionary War.  

The people of Virginia were right in the middle of the war.  They were loyalists, patriots, or neutralists.  

Loyalists were colonists who did not want to break away from Britain.  They were loyal to the king.

Patriots were colonists who wanted to break away from Britain.  They were in favor of freedom.

Neutralists were colonists who did not pick a side.  They did not say if they wanted freedom or if they wanted to stay loyal to the king.

A woman helping a soldier get prepared for the war.

African Americans also choose sides during the Revolutionary War.  They were promised freedom if they fought for the King of England. 

James Armistead Lafayette, a slave from Virginia, served in the Continental Army and was given his freedom after the war.

Women also took on important roles during the war.  While the men were away they had to run the farms and do the work them men had done. 

They also turned their homes into hospitals for wounded, sewed clothing, and grew food for the soldiers.


Portrait of George Washington

George Washington provided military leadership by serving as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army.

George Washington helped the Continental Army defeat the British because he knew how the British faught because he was in the army during the French and Indian War.  

Portrait of Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson provided political leadership by expressing the reasons for colonial independence from England in the Declaration of Independence.


Thomas Jefferson made many contributions to the United States of America.  He wrote the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia Statute of Regligious Freedom, founded the University of Virginia, and was the third president of the United States of America. 

Patrick Henry giving a famous speech.
Patrick Henry inspired patriots from other colonies when he spoke out against taxation without representation by saying, “...give me liberty or give me death.”  

Battle of Yorktown

The Revolutionary War (1775-1783) ended at the Battle of Yorktown.  The British Army was surrounded in Yorktown.  The Continental Army surrounded them by land, and the French Army stopped them from leaving by sea by blocking the harbor.  The French came to the aid of the colonies to help defeat the British.  


The Continental Army defeated the British Army.  The United States of America won their freedom in the Revolutionary War.